“My family and friends love the warm, inviting flavours of the luscious citrus butter, smooth cream cheese, sweet dates, fresh sage and toasted pecans that are captured in every bite of these delicious sweet potatoes.” —Brenda Watts, Gaffney, South Carolina
Preheat oven to 425°. Cut thin slices lengthwise from bottoms of sweet potatoes to allow them to lie flat; discard slices. Place potatoes flat side down; cut crosswise into 1/8-in. slices, leaving them intact at the bottom. Arrange sweet potatoes in a greased 13x9-in. baking pan.
In a small bowl, whisk together butter, brown sugar, orange juice and orange zest. Spoon half the butter mixture evenly over sweet potatoes; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Combine cream cheese, dates and sage; spread between potato slices.
Bake, covered, until potatoes are just becoming tender, 45-50 minutes. Remove pan from oven and uncover; spoon remaining butter mixture over potatoes and top with pecans. Return to oven and bake until potatoes are completely tender and topping is golden brown, 25-30 minutes longer. If desired, serve with additional chopped fresh sage.